Welcome back. It’s still very quiet Arsenal news-wise so this will be the briefest of posts. A micro-post, if you will.
I’ll start with some words from fit-again Petr Cech, who spoke exclusively to the Arsenal Weekly podcast and discussed how football has taught him many things, including the importance of respecting his opponents. He said:
It’s a part of the game. For 90 or 95 minutes you are on the battlefield but then then the game finishes. Sometimes you enjoy the game more because it has these individual battles and individual challenges. Sometimes you think, ‘I love this part of the game because I was battling with the striker for every corner, every free-kick, pushing each other and trying to block each other’. When you finish the game you think, ‘Okay he gave me a time but I did well’ and then you’re happy with that. When you play the game for such a long time and you know the players you’re playing against, you know each other’s game better and you know them personally so sometimes you talk to them after. Not all the time, but sometimes. There are games where you speak to people. You have to respect your opponent and you have to respect the game. Everybody wants to win and it means everything to everyone. You play the game to win but on the other hand you have to respect your opponent and you have to respect the fact that sometimes the other team plays better than you and deserve to win more. You know they’ve spent as much time as you working hard and preparing to win, that they have given everything to that. Team sport not only teaches you the ability to work in a team, but also the ability to respect your opponent. This is a big part of sport.
Meanwhile, Alex Iwobi has been speaking to Arsenal Player about scoring his first-ever Premier League goal – at Everton a few weeks ago – and explaining the celebration that followed. He said:
That moment was crazy! When Hector got the ball and I saw the space, I just tried to sprint for my life. Thank God Hector found me, I got the ball and scored. I can’t describe the feeling, I started losing my head and the celebration… I don’t know where that came from, but I’m sticking with it now! The best way to describe it is that it’s my number , and the Gunners [are] Arsenal. I was just excited and also my friends told me to do something crazy, so it was for them. I already felt at home [in the team] but that goal made me a bit more confident, made me try a few more things and made me feel a bit more relaxed so I was happy to get it.
What can we say about Iwobi other than he’s got the footballing world at his feet right now. If he continues on his current trajectory in terms of development, not only will he surpass his famous uncle Jay-Jay Okocha’s talents pretty soon, we might actually win the league again at some point. Keep on keeping on Alex!
See you tomorrow.